Orange Is the New Black Season 2 14 times more popular than Season 1 (among pirates)
Staff Reporter | On 09, Jun 2014Reading time: 2 mins
Orange Is the New Black Season 2 is 14 times more popular than Season 1, according to new stats from tracking firm Excipio.
55,668 people watched episodes of the second season of the show within 48 hours of its premiere last Friday, 14 times more than the 3,850 during the first two days of the first season’s release last year. The only problem? They weren’t Netflix customers.
Yes, Excipio’s piracy-tracking stats found that the latest season of Jenji Kohan’s fantastic prison drama is being illegally downloaded by more than 55,000 individuals in the US, Canada, UK and Australia. Oz does not have Netflix, which goes some way to explain the downloads Down Under, but the stats also give an indicator (of sorts) of popularity of the show.
Its far higher rate of downloads than the original 13 episodes is to be expected, because the show has now built up far more buzz, but according to Excipio, pirates preferred House of Cards, with 90,841 people in the same four countries downloading episodes within 48 hours of Season 2’s release.
That seems to conflict with Netflix’s previous comments that Orange Is the New Black was its most popular original programme in 2013. That said, illegal viewing behaviour does not necessarily correspond with that of legal viewers, especially given that the majority of Netflix’s customers are in the US, while piracy can take place worldwide regardless of the company’s market penetration. Some viewers’ use of proxy services to access other countries’ streaming library only muddies the water further.
Indeed, Netflix’s relationship with piracy is a curious one. Before now, the company has said that it considers illegal download behaviour as one factor in picking what content will be popular in different territories. It has also previously said that piracy drops in a country following the launch of their service – a claim that the lack of downloads for Orange or House of Cards compared to, say, HBO’s Game of Thrones seems to back up.
What is clear, though, is that piracy continues to be a problem for Netflix, albeit to far less an extent than it is for HBO, whose epic continues to be the most pirated show in the world, with 1.17 million IPs torrenting the premiere of Season 4 within hours of its broadcast.
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